We’re approaching the one year anniversary of my Daddy’s entrance into Heaven April 11th, 2016. On one hand it’s hard to believe a full year has passed, while on the other hand, it seems like just yesterday he was here laughing and giving words of wisdom and advice.
I miss him more than I ever imagined possible, and here I thought I had prepared my heart for the loss, but turns out this simply wasn’t something I could prepare for, regardless of how much I tried!
Life is so different without him. Recently I watched a little old man shuffling in front of me and my mind went back to my Daddy and how I’d always envisioned caring for him as he aged, holding his arm as he walked, and slowing my stance just so I could walk beside him. Then I started crying as I faced reality: I will never get that memory with him! It’s over, he’s gone and I had to watch him die a very slow and painful death.
His passing has made me view life differently… more finite than I have ever viewed it before. We grow up envisioning our lives as an infinite amount of time, dreaming of it turning out a certain way; college, career, marriage, family, house, supporting our parents as they journey into their silver years, and then growing old with our spouse. Alas, life doesn’t always turn out that way, it’s not cookie cutter perfect, predictable or even pretty. Life is hard. It’s tattered with pain, lots of pain, buckets of tears, as well as amazing adventures, loving memories, joyous celebrations and many blessings.
Life is complex
I am slowly learning that it’s not so much about making a perfect life, but rather about choosing to
enjoy each imperfect day as a finite opportunity to be enjoyed before it passes.
We tell ourselves “there’s always tomorrow” when it comes to setting aside time for ourselves, planning a trip away, visiting with family or friends, or wearing that special necklace or outfit. But reality is, there isn’t always tomorrow and it’s up to us today to determine how we want to spend that day if it were our very last one here on earth!
Life is finite-how do we want to spend it?
I may not have been able to slow my stance to walk beside my Dad as he aged, but I still have my amazing Mom who I get to walk beside and enjoy life with! I still have the opportunity to support her in her silver years and make new memories with her that last a lifetime! When her stance slows, I’ll slow mine just so I can walk beside her. When she forgets she told me something, I’ll smile because one day I’ll forget too, and patience is something precious. When she can’t hear, I’ll speak louder, laugh louder and love louder so she knows how much she is treasured by this daughter.
Trust me, this past year has been the absolute hardest year of my entire life. Sadness, depression, confusion and anger have all been part of my journey. Yet one thing has been a constant: God’s immeasurable love and mercy.
There have been days all I wanted to do was cry and lay in bed. Days when I was so angry I just wanted a punching bag because I was afraid I would use someone’s face as one! Days when I felt so insanely alone and misunderstood, and my heart hurt so bad I just couldn’t stand to look in the mirror or face another human being. Yet, in His infinite grace and love, God provided me with the support I needed. I may not have wanted to get through the pain, but God has carried me through. He has completed me!
I’ve always loved Footprints, but this year that writing became real-life for me, as I have literally fallen into the arms of Jesus and leaned, all in, completely and utterly broken and feeling unfix-able. Jesus has carried me through, day after day and amidst all the pain, He’s brought so many incredible blessings! God completes me.
I have no idea where you are in life or what you’re going through, but I don’t need to, in order to be able to tell you that while life is insanely complex, God is willing and able to complete you if you’ll lean in, all in and allow Him to comfort you and provide for all your needs. I only know this because He’s doing it for me. So if anything else, just be comforted in knowing you are not alone… we’re in this together! ♥